This recipe takes the ‘pine’ out of pineapple upside-down cake. French upside-down apple cake is similar to the all-time favorite pineapple version. It is baked in the exact same way too. The cake pan is lined with apple wedges instead of pineapple rings.
Once baked, it is flipped over, revealing the neat layers of baked, tangy apple slices. This cake gets its health quotient from the tart Granny Smith apples that are generally used for baking. It is quick to bake and can be served at tea or packed into snack boxes.
Preparation Time: 25 minutes.
Baking Time: 40-50 minutes
2 cups cake flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon powdered cardamom
1 teaspoon powdered cinnamon
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
3/4 cup superfine sugar
2-3 medium sized Granny Smith apples
3/4 cup softened unsalted butter
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1/4 – 1/2 cup milk
1 tablespoon of fresh, clear lemon juice
For this recipe, you will need a 9-inch round cake pan, electric mixer with a paddle attachment or a hand mixer and a large bowl for mixing the ingredients. In cake baking, it is important to use fine dry ingredients for perfect texture, free of any larger, coarse bits. Sift the cake flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon powder, cardamom powder and salt into a bowl and set aside. Wash and peel the apples. Remove the cores and slice one apple. You can slice them into fine rings or wedges, whichever you like.
Butter the sides and bottom of the cake pan and sprinkle with half the brown sugar. Neatly arrange the apple slices over the brown sugar. Maintain some sort of pattern so that the arrangement looks impressive when the cake is flipped over. Sprinkle the remaining brown sugar all over the apple slices and drizzle evenly with the fresh lemon juice.
Preheat the oven to 170 C. While it heats, get started on the batter. In a large mixing bowl, beat the softened butter and superfine sugar till pale and creamy with the mixer set to medium speed. Beat in the vanilla essence next. Blend in the eggs, one at a time.
Set the mixer to low to beat in the dry ingredients. Add a portion of the flour mixture to the butter-sugar mixture. With each addition of flour, pour in a little milk. Continue till all the flour mixture and milk has been mixed into the batter. Take care not to over-mix the batter. This will cause the cake to lose volume which is obtained through aeration. Over-mixed cakes tend to have a tough texture. Mix the ingredients till just blended and not any further.
Chop the remaining apple into small pieces and stir into the batter. Pour the batter into the cake pan and bake for 40-50 minutes. You can use a toothpick to test if the cake is done. Five minutes before you think the cake is done, slip the cake pan out and insert a toothpick in the center. If it comes out clean, the cake is done. Cool the cake in the pan for 15-20 minutes before removing it. Turn it over on to a wire rack and cool completely. This cake is best served warm and keeps for 2 days.